Soul food is an African-American cuisine that primarily originated in the Southern United States. It uses a variety of ingredients indigenous to Africa and elements borrowed from Native American cuisine. Owned by Miami-based restaurateur John Kunkel, Yardbird Southern Table & Bar’s pioneer outlet was opened in Miami Beach, Florida. A second outlet opened in Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas.
Now available at the Marina Bay Sands, the “Bird” has landed among top elite establishments such as CUT by Wolfgang Puck and Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay.
The interior of the restaurant features plenty of wooden furniture and warm lights giving a comfortable and relaxed feel. What caught our eye was the interesting whiskey bottles re-provisioned as light covers.
We held high expectations as we started dinner with Deviled Eggs(14SGD), dill, chives and smoked trout roe and Fried Green Tomato BLT(18SGD), house smoked pork belly, pimento cheese, smoky tomato jam, frisée, lemon vinaigrette.
The deviled eggs had a smoky saltiness from trout roe and the piped yolk was interestingly spiced with a tiny bit of sourness. This helped open up for the fried green tomato BLT, the pork belly was flavorful and the smoky tomato jam highlighted the smoky elements. The sourness of the vinaigrette and bitterness from the frisée help cut through the fatness of the pork with the pimento cheese adding an interesting flavour profile.
Macaroni & Cheese(14SGD) pasta, five artisanal cheese with a crispy herb crust was delicious with the thick creamy cheese. A simple dish that is well done.
Butter lettuce & Grilled Mango Salad(18SGD) char-grilled mango, red onion, smoked pecans, tomato, benne seed vignette.
Chicken ‘N’ Watermelon ‘N’ Waffles(45SGD) Southern style Lewellyn’s Fine Fried Chicken is the highlight, cooked with a 100-year old recipe. The chicken would be brined for 27 hours before mixed in a medley of spices such as paprika, cayenne pepper and garlic powder. The waffles were fluffy and slightly savory, quite a difference from the usual cakey breakfast waffles.
The chicken itself was not overly crispy while being fried golden to perfection. The meat was juicy and moist even for the breast portions with spices evident in each bite. If you are looking for a bit of heat there is a Tabasco-like chilly sauce provided along side. Our take is to skip the sauce and just enjoy the chicken with the waffles.
We ended dinner with Banana Pudding(14SGD) rum soaked banana cake, vanilla wafers, fresh banana, chantilly cream. The design of the desert is cute resembling a rooster walking among grass and gravel. The bananas were sweet and the vanilla wafers provided the crusty bite. Our only complaint was that the container was too small.
We had the Blackberry Bourbon Lemonade(27SGD) and Southern Peach(24SGD). Some of the innovative cock tails that incorporate bourbon paying tribute to the southern style. Sadly for those who like their Bourbon with Coca Cola, you are out of luck.
It was a shame that we did not get to try some of the classics like shrimp and grits or the butter milk biscuits. We did spot some interesting dishes on the menu such as the Low Country Laksa(38SGD) likely a tribute to local flavours by owner John Kunkel. Overall The Bird Southern Table And Bar is a great place for large groups looking for good soul food and a great selection of drinks. The star on the menu was truly the chicken and its long southern heritage. Definitely one of the places to try while you are at Marina Bay Sands.